Krumkake Recipe (a Delicious Cardamom Cookie)

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Krumkake are must on our Christmas cookie trays.  This krumkake recipe makes light, crispy, delicate, golden wafer cookies rolled into a traditional cone shape.  These Norwegian cookies are traditionally flavored with cardamom and vanilla, but can be made in many different flavors if you want to experiment. 

Krumkake recipe for making Scandinavian krumkake cookies.

If you've ever had an Italian pizzelle cookie, they're similar, but Krumkake are a more light and delicate Norwegian cookie.

When my mother was young, she had an elderly neighbor who made traditional Norwegian cookies.  That's where my mother fell in love with this delicious recipe, and I grew up loving them, too.  Our Christmas wouldn't feel complete without krumkake on our our holiday cookie trays.

Krumkake cookies on a metal sheet pan

Can I Fill Krumkake?

  • Sure!  Why not!  I did it once, and some people certainly do fill krumkake with a variety of fillings, like whipped cream and fresh berries, but I love them just on their own.   Plus, you'll have to be careful about what you put inside and how quickly you can serve the cookies so they won't get soggy.  But it's certainly possible and has been done.

Ingredients for krumkake on a wooden cutting board surrounded by evergreen branches.

Krumkake Recipe:

  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup of butter, melted
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 Tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups flour

Freshly ground cardamom in a marble mortar and pestle on a white weathered wood background.

You don't have to grind your own cardamom from fresh, whole spices, but it does make a big difference in the flavor.  I don't bother to use whole spices very often, but I almost always do when I have a recipe that calls for cardamom.  I just use a mortar and pestle to grind my whole spices when I need them.

Should You Toast Cardamom Seeds for Making Krumkake?

  • For krumkake, no.  I tested the cardamom both toasted and untoasted, and the unanimous opinion was (surprisingly) that we preferred the untoasted and ground cardamom flavor and scent.  

Should You Remove the Outer Shell of Cardamom Seeds Before Grinding?

  • I say yes!  I did some research, and discovered that you don't actually have to remove the outer husk of the cardamom before grinding it.  But the flavor is (not surprisingly) much more intense and pure when I go to the bother of removing that outer shell and just grinding the tiny interior seeds.  I think the added flavor boost is worth the small bit of extra effort.

Krumkake batter in a glass bow with a cookie scoop balanced on the rim of the bowl.

Melt butter and combine the ingredients in a bowl and mix to combine.  No need for a mixer for this simple recipe.

Krumkake batter placed on a heated VillaWare Krumkake Iron

You will need a special krumkake iron to make this crisp cookie.  

Heat krumkake iron before making your first cookies.  If you're using an electric krumkake iron, it will automatically heat to the right temperature--there's only one setting.  If you're using an old-fashioned aluminum krumkake iron on the stovetop, use medium-high heat and heat krumkake iron until a drop of water sizzles immediately when dropped on the hot iron plate.

My electric iron has a nonstick coating, but I generally coat with cooking spray or brush with vegetable oil once or twice while cooking the whole batch for extra insurance.  There's no need to do it every time, but if you notice the krumkake starting to stick, give it another light wipe of oil.

Scoop a small quantity of the krumkake batter (about a Tablespoon of the batter) in the center of the iron.

What Krumkake Iron is the Best?

  • I have a VillaWare Krumkake iron, but it looks like that brand isn't being made any more.  This brand looks absolutely identical, down to the pattern.  An electric krumkake iron is a great choice, especially if you have an electric stove.
  • The very best krumkake I've ever had were all made on an old-fashioned cast aluminum krumkake iron that sits on the stovetop.  While this device creates the most perfect and delicate krumkake, it only works well if you have a gas stove.  It makes horrible, burnt krumkake on an electric stove.  There is a lot to be said for the convenience of electric models.  

Golden brown, cooked Krumkake on the krumkake iron, ready to be rolled on the wooden forms.

Cook the krumkake until a light golden brown color.  You'll know it's a good time to check the krumkake after about 30 seconds, and when the steam has stopped emerging from the sides of the iron.

Two rolled krumkake and two krumkake cookies rolled around wooden forms on a white weathered wood background.

Remove the hot cookie from the electric krumkake baker using a narrow spatula.

While still piping hot, roll the krumkake around the wooden shaping cone.

Krumkake irons will come with a wooden cone, but if you've lost yours, a very traditional method is to wrap the hot cookie around handle of a wooden spoon.  You won't get that traditional cone shape (not quite like an ice cream cone, since it has an open hole at each end), but you'll still get an absolutely delicious, crisp rolled cookie.

Tray of golden brown Krumkake surrounded by fresh evergreen branches and a wooden krumkake rolling cone form.

Let the cookie cool on the cone while you cook the next one.  As the cookie cools, it hardens.  It takes less than a minute for the krumkake to cool down enough so that it will hold its shape when you remove the finished cookie from the wooden mold, and transfer it to a cooling rack to finish cooling to room temperature.

Krumkake are such a beautiful dessert, and so delicious.  I hope you'll enjoy this delicate norwegian cookie as much as we do!

Printable, One Page Krumkake Recipe:

Want a one page, printable, PDF version of this norwegian krumkake recipe?  Click on the image below to print directly or download to your device.

Navigational image leading reader to printable, one page krumkake recipe.

Other Christmas Cookie Recipes You Might Like:

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Nicole Wills, creator of Tikkido

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